POWER TO THE PEONY!
CORONA DEL MAR FLORIST PROVIDES PEONIES TO NEWPORT COAST RESIDENTS
Everybody loves a Peony, in fact, I cannot recall a time that somebody has said they don’t like Peonies. Their soft and fluffy look, together with a beautiful array of colors and fragrance makes them a favorite for brides, and always popular during their blooming season, especially for Mother’s Day. Surprisingly though, not many people know much about the varieties and growth habits of the Peony, and maybe they don’t care, but it really is a fascinating plant.
There are 3 types of Peony; tree, herbaceous and intersectional. The tree Peony is deciduous but its woody shape and form remain during the winter months. Herbaceous Peonies will die back during the winter months but will pop right back up again in the spring. Intersectional Peonies are new to the market and are a result of crossing both herbaceous and tree types. They are also known as Itoh Peonies and are considerably more expensive but well worth every penny (in my humble opinion!) Their blooms are extremely large, the color selection is powerful and their growth habit keeps the woody stems but grow in a dense, thick bush shape.
Peonies are super fussy about the temperature in which they grow as they require approximately 400 hours of a temperature less than 40 degrees in order to produce blooms. Thus there are only select areas in the world where they will grow, the most popular being the Pacific Northwest, Alaska and New Zealand for producing blooms for the cut flower market. In the PNW, May and June are the prime months, then moving onto Alaska for the summer followed by a quiet fall until they are blooming in NZ during our winter months. I know of a lady in Santa Monica who placed ice cubes at the base of her Peony throughout the winter thinking it would produce flowers. Needless to say, it never bloomed!! The availability of Peonies has a huge impact on their price. They are much cheaper when in season coming locally from the PNW than being shipped half way around the world from NZ, so at Corona Del Mar Florist, we always take full advantage of them when we can obtain them locally and use them in abundance in our arrangements.
As a cut flower, the Peony can last anything from a day or two to a week, depending on the variety. They always benefit from a fresh cut of their stem every other day, along with fresh water. Some Peonies smell divine while others smell like rotten fish, so never be fooled by appearances! As to why some blooms remain tight and do not open is still a mystery and I can only defer to Mother Nature for an answer.
Without a doubt, the Peony is here to stay and remains one of the most popular cut flowers that never fails to impress. Do we love Peonies? Absolutely and unanimously at Corona del Mar Florist they are our faves 🙂